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Update on the Decimation of Millions of Chickens (and turkeys)

Touch the Soil News #166 Recently, Tom Vilsack (U.S. Secretary of Agriculture) announced the federal government expects to pay $191 million to chicken and turkey farmers who lost flocks to the avian flu. Vilsack said that is in addition to the nearly $400 million spent on cleaning up dead birds and disinfecting barns. So, let’s see, that is almost $600 million the government is putting out. Total hen losses are now estimated at 48 million birds. The Iowa Farm Bureau (Iowa is the largest egg producing state in the nation) did a study that showed Iowa will lose nearly $427 million in lost additional value. Directly tragic to not only…

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Food-Chain News Roundup

Touch the Soil News # 149 Billionaires and Food Vietnam’s only billionaire, Pham Nhat Vuong, through his investment company Vingroup, is putting together a $46.5 million dollar greenhouse food enterprise. Up till now, Vuong has been involved in property development – making agriculture a total departure from his norm. Helping in the project is Israeli company Netafim. Netafim builds out greenhouses and is the world’s leader in drip irrigation products and technology. Vuong represents just one small investor, among a growing flock of investors looking to harness their dollars in food and agriculture. Greenhouse food production near cities attracts billionaire Farmers Open Grocery Store Two Canadian farmers – Simone Rudge…

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Market Farmer Profile – Stop Waiting and Jump Right In

Erik-Chickens

Farmer Erik (Erick Halvorson) – also a student at WSU Vancouver, Washington – thinks it’s best to take action with one’s dreams. With access to five (5) farmers markets within a 30 minute drive from his small enterprise, Halvorson is one of some 70,000 farms in the U.S. that only sells directly to consumers. Halvorson began in 2013, leasing 5 acres from his parents to fill, what he calls, a childhood dream. Halvorson started his first year on the animal side of things – based on pasture-raised regimens. He offers eggs, pork and turkey. For 2015, Halvorson is expanding his offerings to include vegetables from a ¾ acre market garden.…

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Clean Meats – A Brother to Organic Vegetables

go-green-turkey-farm

In days past, clean meats had a biblical connotation – what meats are appropriate for people to consume. In modern times, clean meat means clean of antibiotics, growth hormones and drug products popular in medicated animal feeds. If you are like most people, the cost of clean meat coupled with the stories about confined animal feeding operations is a tough one to resolve. It leaves one with misgivings about consuming non-clean meats or struggling to justify the more costly alternative. In our local organic store, hamburger from grass fed cattle not administered hormones is $9.99 per lb. At the local discount store, regular hamburger costs $3.98 lb. So is the…

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